Originally a violinist, Ayree Coletti is a graduate of the Juilliard School Pre-College Division where
her teacher was Naoko Tanaka. As a student at West Chester University, she studied under the
guidance of Sylvia Ahramjian and with Daniel Han of the Philadelphia Orchestra.
Ayree has played with numerous orchestras and ensembles on stages across the United States, such as Carnegie Hall, Weill Recital Hall, Alice Tully Hall, the Kimmel Center, as well as in Japan, Sicily, Romania and China. Ayree has previously performed in the pit on Broadway in “Phantom of the Opera,” served as principal second violin of the Martina Arroyo Foundation “Prelude to Performance” series, appeared as a “jamming artist” on the television series “Mozart in the Jungle,” and was the concertmaster/strings coach of the 92Y School of Music Orchestra.
Since 2007, Ayree has been the President and Founder of Metis Management. She has worked with numerous orchestras and organizations as a concert producer, manager, artist liaison, tour manager, recording production coordinator and many other roles.
Ayree is currently principal 2nd violinist and General Manager of the World Civic Orchestra, is a regular substitute of the Huntsville Symphony Orchestra, is concluding her two year tenure as Treasurer at East Ithaca Preschool and consults with organizations in arts management. She resides in Ithaca, NY with her husband and their two young boys.
Piano Technician, Restorer, and Curator
My passion for keyboard instruments started at the University of Michigan, where I wanted to program concerts of underperformed classical wind chamber music. One of the works was a piano concerto with wind octet accompaniment, and, when I inquired about using a period-appropriate fortepiano for the performance, was offered lessons on the instrument. This was the first time I took piano lessons, starting around the age of 21, finding middle C and working my way through the Nannerl book to perform that chamber concerto a year later.
This passion led me to Boston, where I attended the North Bennet Street School, worked as a technician at Boston University, and started making instruments of my own. I have been so fortunate work there, to accumulate three very different pianos of the 1840s to restore, and had moments working for artists I enjoyed even before meeting them.
I take this passion with me to Cornell University and the Center for Historical Keyboards, working on historic and modern pianos, chasing that feeling that comes with reminding someone how much they love their piano when it sounds and feels its best.
Ji Young Kim
Ji Young Kim is a music scholar, performer, and educator specializing in Western art music and historical pianos from the late 18th and 19th centuries. She currently serves as Assistant Professor of Musicology at the Eastman School of Music after teaching at Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, the Australian National University, and Cornell University, where she received her PhD in Musicology in 2019. Her dissertation explored aspects of embodiment as interpersonal communication in the piano compositions of Robert Schumann and Johannes Brahms; it received the Karl Geiringer award from the American Brahms Society in 2018. More recently, she has presented and written on the musical collaborations between Clara Schumann and Jenny Lind. In all facets of her work, Ji Young combines microhistory, music analysis, and performance practice in search for musical meaning and concrete sonic and embodied experiences.
Mike Cheng-Yu Lee
Mike Cheng-Yu Lee is one of a new generation of pianists who is at home performing on pianos that span the early 18th to the late 20th centuries. Awarded Second Prize and Audience Prize at the 2011 Westfield International Fortepiano Competition by a jury that included Robert Levin and the late Christopher Hogwood, his performances have garnered attention for the fresh perspectives they bring to familiar repertoire. For his debut recital in Australia he received a rare five-star review in Limelight Magazine: “Try as one might, it was hard to avoid cliché responses like ‘stunning’, even ‘electrifying’. I don’t think I have heard a Mozart recital quite like this. I heard things in Mozart’s music I had never thought possible and certainly had never encountered before.”
As a chamber musician, Mike regularly collaborates with both modern and period performers and ensembles. He has appeared as soloist with the New World Symphony at the invitation of Michael Tilson Thomas and collaborated with musicians from the Formosa, Juilliard, and Aizuri quartets among others.
Mike is regularly invited to guest teach and perform at some of the most prominent music schools around the world, including the Royal Academy of Music, Oberlin Conservatory, Eastman School of Music, the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California, the Bienen School of Music at Northwestern University, and the University of Michigan–Ann Arbor, among others. In 2015-17 he was Visiting Assistant Professor at the Jacobs School of Music, Indiana University–Bloomington.
As a scholar, Mike's interests lie at the intersection between music theory and analysis, performance studies, and organology. To date he has published on aspects of form, meter, and tempo in Schubert (Music Theory Online) and has a forthcoming article in 19th-Century Music that develops a new hermeneutic interpretation of Chopin's E-minor prelude drawing on autograph and biographical sources, analysis, and performance studies. Additionally, Mike has contributed writings to Early Music America Magazine and 18th-Century Music.
In more recent years, Mike has assumed curatorship of important instrument collections. In 2017-19 he was director of the Australian National University Keyboard Institute which houses one of the southern hemisphere's largest collections of historical pianos. Currently he is Artist/Scholar-in-Residence at the Cornell Center for Historical Keyboards where he divides his work between performance and scholarship, teaching into the DMA program, and curatorship of the center's historical piano collection.
Mike studied at the Yale School of Music and holds a Ph.D. in musicology from Cornell University with a dissertation that was awarded the Donald J. Grout Memorial Dissertation Prize. His teachers include Malcolm Bilson, Boris Berman, Michael Friedmann, and the renowned Haydn scholar James Webster.
Piano Technician, Restorer, and Curator
While attending Cornell University in the early 1970s, I began to take an interest in piano tuning and repair. I turned to library books and the journal published by the Piano Technicians Guild, and bought an old upright piano to practice on. At first I was mostly interested in doing it for my own needs, to save money, but I soon realized that it could become a career. I knew that there was a need for it both locally and nationally. In early 1974 I applied to the North Bennett Street School in Boston, then and now the best place in the country to study this subject. For a few months, while waiting for the next class to begin, I took a job at the Aeolian American factory in East Rochester, NY, manufacturer of Mason & Hamlin, Chickering, Knabe, and several other brands of piano.
The director of the piano tech program at NBSS was Bill Garlick. In addition to being an inspiring teacher, he had an important collection of mostly 19th-century pianos, which were housed at the school. So, in addition to a practical education based on modern pianos, I got a terrific introduction to historical pianos as well.
I returned to Ithaca in August 1975. I got work from the start, and around Thanksgiving Day I got a call from Malcolm Bilson, who told me that the job of tuning pianos for the Department of Music was open. He had me tune and regulate a practice room piano; he liked my work, and asked me to take the job, which I was happy to do. The Department was smaller then, with about 35 pianos, and I continued my private piano service business.
Malcolm’s interest in fortepianos grew, and I was of course interested, but in those days I didn’t work on them much. He is perfectly capable of doing his own tuning, and he knows a great deal about the other aspects of piano maintenance. Also, as his concert career took off, he knew he’d have to do most of the tuning for his concerts, because most piano technicians aren’t familiar with fortepianos. But as the decades passed, the term “fortepiano” began to encompass much more than the five octave instruments made in Vienna at the time of Mozart. As the number and variety of his, and Cornell’s, instruments increased, I began doing more of the tuning and other maintenance, especially since about 2000. My own interest and knowledge increased as a result.
I‘m now fortunate to be able to work with the amazing group of pianos at the Cornell Center for Historical Keyboards, covering the entire history of the instrument up to the present. I really enjoy working on the early pianos, and at the same time I am also very much engaged in working on contemporary pianos.